What Are CBD Topicals?

Written by

Mell Green

Mell is a cannabis connoisseur who has been published in nearly 50 online publications surrounding cannabis, including Cannabis Industry Association, Analytical Cannabis, Terpenes and Testing Magazine, Plant People, Byrdie, and...

CBD Oracle's Editorial Process
CBD topical cream for pain relief
Advertisement for THCA flower

CBD Topicals are creams, ointments, lotions and or balms filled with Cannabidiol (CBD).

The combination of Hemp on irritated skin or chronic pain can offer wonderful relief. CBD topicals, though fairly established within the cannabis community, are continuing to improve in bioavailability and potency. Nowadays, finding the perfect CBD topical is easy as can be.

Getting your ideal topical always begins with understanding the product itself. To help provide you with the best experience possible, we’ve given you everything you need to know about what CBD topicals are, why they’re beneficial, and how to enjoy your own.

First glance:

  • CBD topicals are topically applied balms or creams that are infused with cannabidiol. 
  • CBD topicals can help with conditions such as eczema, psoriasis and chronic pain, such as injuries or arthritis.
  • These types of products are well-sought after for their ability to reduce pain and relieve muscle and joint discomfort in targeted areas. 
  • Along with pain relief, CBD topicals are also ideal for certain skin conditions, as CBD contains skin-healing properties. 
  • Always take the time to examine the ingredients and third-party lab-test results in your chosen CBD product to see if it aligns with your standards.

What Are CBD Topicals?

CBD topical products for sale at a store

When we talk about CBD topicals, we’re referring to topically applied cannabidiol on a substance that’s made to be rubbed into the skin.

They can come in forms like CBD-infused lotions, balms, salves, creams, roll-ons, and even bath bombs. No matter what form they come in, if you’re rubbing CBD into your skin–especially in a targeted area–you’re enjoying a topical. 

In general, CBD topicals act differently than other CBD products, as CBD molecules are not able to penetrate the bloodstream. When applied, even the most potent amounts will not cross that barrier simply because of CBD’s molecular structure itself.

However, just because they don’t penetrate the bloodstream doesn’t mean they’re not effective. 

The Unique Benefits of Topically Applied CBD

When applied, the CBD within topicals penetrate your skin’s pores and work to target concentrated areas of pain. Instead of producing full-body effects, topicals are designed to provide serious relief and other therapeutic effects in the places on your body that need it most.  

Muscle and Joint Pain

Typically, CBD topicals are relied upon for their help with deep muscle and joint pain. With their concentrated relief, you’re able to experience significant pain relief that’s much more immediate than your regular Aspirin. You simply rub the topical straight onto the point of pain and allow for the CBD molecules to penetrate directly. 


Along with muscles and joints, you can also apply CBD topicals for things like menstrual cramps and even arthritis. The higher the levels of CBD, the more potent these infused products will be. If you’re someone constantly plagued by chronic pain, high doses of concentrated relief like topicals may be ideal for places of pain that aren’t easily treated. 

Eczema, Dermatitis and Psoriasis

On top of deep-seated pains, many turn to CBD topicals for their assistance with skin conditions. Great for those with sensitive skin, dry skin, or even eczema, dermatitis, or psoriasis, these medicated balms have been shown to provide relief for the skin that’s not easily achieved. With CBD’s gentle skin-calming properties and all-natural elements, it creates an ideal moisturizer for skin that needs a little extra support. 

How to Best Apply CBD Topicals

Applying CBD topical for pain relief
Applying CBD body serum to the skin for pain relief. Photo: Lord Jones
  1. Start by cleaning the area you’re going to apply your topical to. A simple wash of hot water and soap will do the trick. This helps to rid the area of bacteria and get it prepped and ready for the cannabinoids. 
  2. Apply the recommended amount of topical to the area of pain. Rub the topical in until it has fully absorbed into the skin. 
  3. Let the topical soak into your pores, and avoid extreme temperatures when using. Don’t go out into intense heat or sunlight after applying your topicals, or the cannabinoids’ potency will start to degrade.
  4. If you don’t feel a difference after thirty minutes, apply a larger dose. 

Getting Your Own CBD Topicals

Like we mentioned, finding your own ideal CBD topical doesn’t have to be difficult. Whether it be a super-strong lotion for your menstrual cramps or a more gently dosed CBD salve or balm to keep your lips more moisturized than ever, there are so many different options for you to choose from. However you want a little relief, you can find a topical to provide it. 

When purchasing CBD topicals, always take the time to ensure that the topical you find contains ingredients that you’re comfortable with. A good CBD company will also provide third-party lab-test results along with their products, and these reassure you that your product is only filled with the best components possible. 

No matter what kind of CBD-infused topical you’re interested in, there’s a CBD company that makes the perfect product for you. Be it purchased from Plant People, Mineral Health, or Lord Jones, you just have to find it! 

Final Thoughts

Keep in mind that not every topical is the same. Some topicals offer certain benefits while others offer some that are completely different. Always consider the CBD strength you’re aiming for, the method of application, and why you’re looking for extra relief. From there, your perfect CBD topical will be waiting for you.